Attorneys of Rick Bright, the ousted director of the agency responsible for developing countermeasures to Covid-19, confirmed that he would be joining a role in the federal government's coronavirus response next week.
The sources told CNN that Bright has been offered a job as the second-in-command of the Accelerating Covid-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines partnership. Bright's lawyers said during a news release on Thursday, May 14, that he plans to report for the job next week.
Bright was part of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which has been vital in responding to the coronavirus outbreak. He was recently removed from his position as the director.
Department of Health Confirms details
According to CNN, a source from the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed the position offered to Bright. The source said that Bright would be taking up the role of the second-in-command to the partnership. The HHS said it has offered the Accelerating Covid-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines partnership $1 billion to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
The HHS source also told CNN that Bright's role in the Covid-19 partnership under the National Institutes of Health is specific and legitimate. The source also mentioned that earlier there were plans for Bright to be assigned to a critical role in Operation Warp Speed.
Bright's attorney said: "Contrary to administration talking points, Dr. Bright has never refused to report to NIH, and now that his position there has been identified, he plans to begin next week."
According to his attorney, Bright is ready to take up his role unless Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar believes that he should be reassigned due to the requests from the US Office of Special Counsel.
Since he was removed from his role as the leader of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, he has been involved in a public war with the HHS. He alleged that he was removed from his position because of his criticism of the administration's response to the coronavirus pandemic. He has also filed a whistleblower complaint.